The Black Books 1913-1932
The publication in 2009 of Liber Novus, C. G. Jung’s Red Book, has justly been regarded as a cultural event of historical significance. The publication enabled a new reading of Jung, which is just beginning, based for the first time on primary documentation of the most critical creative phase in Jung’s life. To continue this, the Philemon Foundation is pleased to announce the commencement of the editing for publication of C. G. Jung’s Black Books, from 1913 to 1932, in a facsimile edition, accompanied by translation, introduction and notes, in collaboration with the Foundation of the Works of C. G. Jung. The edition will be edited by Sonu Shamdasani, translated by Mark Kyburz, John Peck and Sonu Shamdasani and published by W. W. Norton.
The text of The Red Book draws on material from The Black Books between 1913 and 1916. Approximately fifty percent of the text of The Red Book derives directly from The Black Books, with very light editing and reworking. The Black Books are not personal diaries, but the records of the unique self-experimentation which Jung called his ‘confrontation with the unconscious.’He did not record day to day happenings or outer events, but his active imaginations and depictions of his mental states together with his reflections on these. The material which Jung did not include in The Red Book is of equal interest to the material which he did include. The Black Books shed light on Jung’s ‘confrontation with the unconscious,’ for which they are the prime documentation, as well as the genesis of The Red Book, the further elaboration of Jung’s personal cosmology, and the making of analytical psychology.
W. W. Norton